Workplace Culture


Look in our Etiquette section for tips on everyday situations.  Here are some other observations:

If you are new at the job, don't expect your new colleagues to introduce themselves -  it's up to you to introduce yourself - or the boss may take you around and introduce you to the important people.

When starting a new job, leaving the job or when it is your birthday, it is common to celebrate with your colleagues. This can be just coffee and cake or more extravagant, depending on the circumstances. Ask a co-worker or someone in an administrative role what the normal procedure at your place of work is, and if they have tips where to purchase said cake if you are not a baker.

When at work, expect to work hard and concentrated. Long lunch breaks and breaks in-between are the exception, rather than the rule.

In the workplace, do not be expect positive feedback or praise for your work.

Most large companies offer subsidized meals for their employees and provide a hearty three-course lunch - many employees consider it to be their major meal of the day. This causes drowsiness in the afternoon, but siestas are not part of the workday in Germany.

Many Germans keep private life and work separate. There are always exceptions - generally the younger the crowd, the more likely you will be to socialize outside of work with your colleagues.